This week we had the opportunity to give some local kids an introduction to knitting and yarnbombing. We taught finger knitting at Camp REAL, a program put on by Newark Parks and Recreation. They were familiar with us through Knit the Trail, and asked if we'd be interested in being a part of this wonderful camp that gives kids fun summer mornings full of new experiences.
We met Sharon Bruen, who shared her enthusiasm for the program: "Camp R.E.A.L. is an eight week long free half-day summer camp for children ages 6 to 14 in one of Newark's lower income areas near Dickey Park. Camp R.E.A.L.'s focus is on Recreation, Exploration, Adventure, and Leadership; tools and traits that we try to instill in the campers through the summer."
The night before we were going to teach, we used two of our giant tree blankets from Knit the Trail to yarnbomb the trees at the park. We wanted the campers to experience the surprise of yarnbombing before we explained their project to them. Since we were working with a wide age range, finger knitting seemed like the best way for the kids to try 'knitting'. They all learned pretty quickly, and some loved it so much they went home and taught their family. All their pieces were wrapped around the branches of a giant tree that can be easily seen in their neighborhood.
It's special to see all their pieces come together into one colorful display. We hope they take pride surprising their families and friends with their yarnbomb. We had so much fun getting to know these kids and sharing our love of knitting with them.
For us, this really is the essence of what it means to be knit together in love. Being part of a community that encourages each other, reaches out in creative ways, and has fun together is one way we envision knitting connecting people's hearts and lives.